Reducing energy consumption, procuring carbon-free energy and carbon offsetting are the Port of Helsinki’s methods for achieving carbon neutrality

Lokkeja pollarin päällä.

The Port of Helsinki intends for its own operations to be carbon neutral next year. To this end, the Port has implemented a variety of measures in order to reduce its energy consumption. In addition to this, the Port’s methods for achieving carbon neutrality include procuring energy from low- or zero-emission sources and carbon offsetting.

The Port of Helsinki’s carbon neutrality work is based on three principles:

1. reducing energy consumption,

2. using low/zero-emission energy sources;

3. carbon offsetting.

“So far, we have managed to reduce the emissions generated by our own operations to less than half of what they were in 2015, the reference year of the Port of Helsinki’s carbon neutrality programme, as a result of various energy efficiency measures and the procurement of carbon-free electricity,” says the Port’s Head of Sustainable Development Andreas Slotte.
“We have improved the energy efficiency of buildings, boosted the recycling and recovery of heating energy and switched to using LED lighting in harbour fields and properties. We have also increased our own solar power generation.”

However, no amount of energy efficiency measures can ever reduce energy consumption to zero. That is why the Port of Helsinki has also set the objective of procuring the energy needed for its operation from carbon-free sources.

“The Port switched to procuring carbon-free electricity in 2020. Next year, we will also switch to using renewable district heating in our properties, the origin of which is guaranteed with the Finnish Energy Authority’s Guarantee of Origin,” Slotte confirms.

In addition to the above measures, a small amount of the Port’s carbon emissions have to be offset. While the Port’s vehicle fleet is almost fully electric, the carbon emissions generated by a few remaining non-electric vehicles, less than 10 work machines and business trips will be offset.

Carbon offsetting means compensating for generated carbon emissions by reducing or sequestering an equivalent amount of emissions elsewhere.

Carbon neutrality is a key objective

Carbon dioxide is the most significant of the greenhouse gases produced by humans. Its production has not yet been eliminated in international logistics. That is why many of the Port of Helsinki’s choices are steered by the pursuit of carbon neutrality.

The Port of Helsinki’s most important carbon neutrality objectives are described in the Carbon-Neutral Port of Helsinki manifesto (reference year 2015):

  • The Port of Helsinki should be carbon neutral in terms of its own emissions by 2025.
  • A 25% reduction in vessel emissions by the year 2030.
  • A 60% reduction in emissions from heavy goods vehicles by 2030.
  • A 60% reduction in emissions from work machines used in the harbour area by 2030.

More information:
The Port of Helsinki reports on the achievement of its responsibility and sustainable development goals as a part of its annual reporting.
Read the Port of Helsinki’s annual report 2023